From IDEA to Opportunity…

IDEA is a multidisciplinary initiative that integrates NSCAD Design with Dalhousie's Faculty of Engineering and the Rowe School of Business. IDEA is built around new product development, and provides professional mentoring, seminars, and programming for students, faculty and businesses in support of product development. 


Our Community


When you participate in IDEA Product Design Programs, you join the Dal Innovates community. Sandbox programs (such as IDEA) introduce students to innovation and entrepreneurship, helping you develop a toolbox which you can apply to your own ventures. Dal Innovates provides programming and supports to grow these ventures into viable businesses.

To learn more, visit Dal Innovates.


Our Team


The integration of product design, engineering, and business are key components in the design, development, and commercialization of successful products. Our faculty mentors reflect IDEA’s commitment to multidisciplinary collaboration, with each member offering a unique perspective on product development.


Clifton Johnston - Engineering

As Academic Director of the Emera ideaHUB and NSERC Chair in Design Engineering, Clifton Johnston (PhD, MSc, BSc) oversees program develop for residents of the Emera ideaHUB and students within IDEA, and integrates new design, innovation, and entrepreneurship programming into existing engineering curricula.


Glen Hougan - Design

Glen Hougan (MEDes, BSc) is a product and service designer, with a background in human factors, user experience, product development, and design thinking. He is an Associate Professor in Product Design at NSCAD University, and the principle of Wellspan Research and Design - a design consultancy focusing on healthcare.


David C. Roach - Business

As an Assistant Professor in the Rowe School of Business, David C. Roach (PhD, MBA, BEng), runs MBA courses in entrepreneurship, innovation management, and new venture creation. With his background in engineering and product development, David brings a skillful and well-rounded viewpoint to the IDEA team.